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Sep 26, 2007

Coconut oil


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Coconut oil is a fat consisting of about 90% saturated fat. The oil contains predominantly medium chain triglycerides,[1] with roughly 92% saturated fatty acids, 6% monounsaturated fatty acids, and 2% polyunsaturated fatty acids. Of the saturated fatty acids, coconut oil is primarily 44.6% lauric acid, 16.8% myristic acid and 8.2% palmitic acid, although it contains seven different saturated fatty acids in total. Its only monounsaturated fatty acid is oleic acid while its only polyunsaturated fatty acid is linoleic acid.[2]

Unrefined coconut oil melts at 24-25°C (76°F) and smokes at 170°C (350°F),[3] while refined coconut oil has a higher smoke point of 232°C (450°F).

Coconut oil has a long shelf life compared to other oils, lasting up to two years due to its high saturated fat content; saturated fats resist rancidity. Coconut oil is best stored in solid form—i.e., at temperatures lower than 24.5°C (76°F)—in order to extend shelf life. However, unlike most oils, coconut oil will not be damaged by warmer temperatures.

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